(July 26, 1922 - living) U.S.A.
Director, screenwriter, and producer
Born William Blake Crump in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Edwards was the son of a stage director. He began his career as an actor and script-writer, including seven screenplays for Richard Quine. Edwards created a character named "Quine" for an episode of the 1950s television anthology Four-Star Playhouse called "The Bomb" that he wrote and directed.
His early career as a script-writer was for radio. His hard-boiled private detective scripts for Richard Diamond, Private Detective became NBC's answer to Sam Spade and Philip Marlowe, reflecting Edwards' unique humor. Edwards also created, wrote and directed the 1959 TV series Peter Gunn, with music by Henry Mancini. Mancini's association with Edwards continued in his film work, significantly contributing to their success.
Edwards' most popular films have been comedies, the alcoholism-themed melodrama Days of Wine and Roses being a notable exception. His most fruitful collaboration has been with Peter Sellers in the Pink Panther movies. Efforts to revive the Panther franchise after the death of Sellers in 1980 met with little critical or commercial success, with the exception of the 2006 film (which Edwards did not direct), which has spawned a 2008 sequel.
In 2004 Edwards received an Academy Honorary Award for cumulative achievements over the course of his film career. He was portrayed by John Lithgow in the film The Life and Death of Peter Sellers, documenting comic actor Sellers' life and his friendship with Edwards.
Edwards' second wife (from 1969) is Julie Andrews, who has appeared in a number of his films including Darling Lili, 10, Victor/Victoria and the autobiographical satire S.O.B., in which Andrews played a character who was a caricature of herself. In 1995, he wrote the book for the stage musical adaptation of Victor/Victoria, also starring Andrews.
Edwards and Andrews have five children together, including two daughters: Joanna and Amy. Edwards also has two children from a previous marriage: actress Jennifer Edwards.
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